"These all died in faith, not having received the things promised, but having seen them and greeted them from afar, and having acknowledged that they were strangers and exiles on the earth. For people who speak thus make it clear that they are seeking a homeland...a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city." (Hebrews 11:13-14&16b)
The helmet was worn to protect the head against the broadsword, and it bore a crest (according to Noah Webster’s 1828 Dictionary of the English Language). A crest was a part of heraldry identification that answered the questions: Whose man are you? Whose side are you on? What do you stand for? What do you stand against?
Simply defined, hope is the Christian’s attitude towards the future. Hope anticipates what God will yet do as promised in Scripture. Christians are not to hope half-heartedly but with finality, without any doubt concerning the promises of God.
Tucked into the tenth chapter of Mark is a little story that so perfectly parallels our helplessness and only Hope in Christ Jesus.
As I pondered this month’s theme of “Hope,” I was drawn to the hymn, “’Tis So Sweet to Trust in Jesus.” As Christians, we have hope for life after death. What does the world have to put its trust in?
As we were all contemplating the topic of hope this past month, we were slammed with the horror of what happened in Aurora, Colorado, on July 20th, and now we’re confronted with trying to work through how these two conflicting realities fit together: where's the hope amidst horror?
False prophets are spiritual confidence-men (the root for con-man) that earn people’s confidence, trust, support, loyalty, money, etc., by peddling “hope” in tough times or by ascribing a higher power’s approval or mandate for an action in order to lull people into trusting them enough to enter a snare.